Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) landed on Fistral beach in Newquay with 2 tanks and smoking flares to mark the release of their ground breaking WAR Report. The WAR report clearly highlights why Waves Are Resources and, as such, should be recognised as valuable assets, protected for this and future generations. The WAR Report not only focuses on the intrinsic value of waves to surfers but also the economic value to the wider community. Today is also the first day of the Relentless Boardmasters, the UK’s largest surfing competition. The Boardmasters is obviously solely dependent on the waves and the event bring £1,700,000 into the local economy.
The UK is blessed with some world-class waves on all of our coasts. The very best waves in the UK, which could almost be considered freaks of Nature, are the result of a combination of offshore bathymetry, unique coastal geology and prevailing wind and swell patterns found almost nowhere else in the world. It is easy to see that these ‘world-class’ waves, just like other unique natural feature of this planet, should be protected. However, quality is just one factor that is considered in the WAR Report analysis. Consistency, location, number of surfers affected as well as personal preference are all investigated in the report.
There’s a myriad of threats that constantly jeopardize our finite surfing resource, our waves. Last year SAS launched the new Protect Our Waves (POW) campaign that focuses on protecting waves from overzealous on and near shore development, environmental impacts and waverider’s rights of access.
SAS’s WAR Report gives a detailed account of both the intrinsic and economic values of waves to surfers. For the first time, SAS also explains the value of waves to non-surfers. For people who don’t use the sea, the value of waves can be measured financially. Surfers travel to surf waves, eat, need accommodation and other supplies, and even settle in communities where there are waves. In doing so, surfers and their friends and family who may join them, will all spend money in return for these goods and services whilst chasing the next surf session. The WAR report comprehensively details how the entire community around quality surf spots benefit from the waves.
SAS will ensure that all relevant planning bodies in the UK have a hard copy of the WAR Report and will expect the WAR Report to be referenced alongside SAS’s other reports when coastal developments schemes are in the planning process. Download a copy of the SAS WAR Report here…
The WAR Report was written by SAS Trustee Dr Tony Butt PhD. Dr Butt is one of the world’s most highly respected authorities on the science of waves and how they interact with the coastal environment. The WAR Report was written for planners and waveriders alike. Copies of the WAR Report will be given out free by SAS campaigners from the tanks and at the SAS tent on site at the Boardmasters all day.
The WAR Report is an important document for all UK surfers and waveriders. We’re not calling for a Ministry of Surf Defence, but we need to ensure waves are framed in the planning process as valuable resources for the entire community, not just surfers. Waves Are Resources and as such need protecting for this and future generations.
Dom Ferris, POW Project Officer